Maltas per capita GDP revised to 71 per cent of EU average
By Kurt Sansone
The statistical data issued by Eurostat in December reveals much more
than Maltas current wealth when compared to other EU member states
and accession countries. It shows the wide difference between Maltas
declared wealth in 2000 and the revised figure for that year computed
In 2000 Maltas GDP per capita as a percentage of the EU average
was grossly under declared by 18 per cent. The original figure put Malta
at 53 per cent of the EU average. Now, the revised figure for 2000,
as computed by Eurostat, shows that Maltas true GDP per capita
then stood at 71 per cent of the EU average.
The revision exercise for 2000 was computed by the European research
agency on all data presented by the EU member states and the 10 accession
countries. It sought to streamline the data by bringing it in line with
the current version of the European System of Accounts.
At the time, speculation was rife that Maltas comparative wealth
was being calculated in such a way as to show a below average value
in a bid to qualify for as many funds as possible during negotiations.
EU member states are eligible for the maximum funds possible if they
are below 75 per cent of the EU average.
While all accession countries registered fluctuations between the original
calculations and the revised data, none of the differences were more
than six percentage points.
The revised figure for Cyprus stood at 76 per cent, six percentage points
less than the original calculation of 82 per cent. On the other hand,
Lithuanias revised figure was six per cent more than the original
computation. In Maltas case the revised figure added on a whopping
18 percentage points to the original calculation of 53 per cent.
The Eurostat data also shows that Maltas current GDP per capita
(for the year 2002) stands at 69 per cent of the EU average making the
country one of the wealthiest among the 10 accession countries.
Cyprus has the highest GDP per capita, 76 per cent of the EU average
while Malta and Slovenia are both second with GDP per capita calculated
at 69 per cent of the EU average.
Latvia and Lithuania have the lowest GDP per capita at 35 per cent and
39 per cent respectively of the EU average.